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Saturday, August 28, 2010

Creating a life with greater meaning

Anyone who has in tune with the psychology movement during the 1950's and 1960's would be aware of the work by pioneering humanistic psychologist Dr Abraham Maslow. Maslow is best known for his concept of self actualisation - the realising of ones potential which occurs over time as one's basic needs including food, shelter, money and personal intimacy are gradually met throughout the course of a lifetime.

One of Maslow's students, Dr Wayne Dyer was in Sydney last week and reflected on the observed characteristics of individuals who move closer towards their self actualising potential - a state on inner contentment in which one reaches a place of self satisfaction and inner harmony within the chaotic world in which we live.

Dyer reflected that self actualising people have three main characteristics;

1) They become immune to the opinions of others
2) They focus only on what they intend for themselves
3) They are not attached to outcome

3 seemingly simple qualities which are perhaps more easily described than implemented in day to day life.

Imagine being self confident enough to not worry what others thought? To not take it personally when someone told you that your behaviour was inappropriate, that they did not like you or that you had offended them. To not be disappointed when something had not worked out the way you planned it - to be able to walk away and focus solely on the bigger picture goals that you had for yourself? To ignore the masses of stimulus that crosses our path on a daily basis and instead focus solely on tasks, activities and people who bring more meaning to your life?

Maybe easier said than done but something for all of us to be aware of and ultimately aiming for long term as we continue with this Game of Life.